For my wonderful Staunton friends…

To my sisters and my brothers
Who ache for meaning and yearn for purpose
May you be overwhelmed by the presence and the love
Of the God who created you and continues to create within you.

I hope, I pray, that no matter what the religious have told you
No matter how the system has trapped you
That you will find solace and strength
In the knowledge that you were beautifully crafted
By a God who will never give up on you.

May you be reminded that Christ stood
And continues to stand with those on the margins
That Jesus came to turn this world upside-down
Giving courage and grace and abundant life to those
Who have been rejected by society and rejected by the church.

I pray, dear friends, that you will be given passion and courage
To journey with the God of transformation
I pray that you will love with complete abandon
I pray that you will follow Jesus to the corners of society
Existing in places where intense pain intersects with overflowing possibility.

May you, with overwhelming joy, breathe deeply
A spirit of wholeness, a spirit of restoration and reconciliation
May you know that God is here
And that God’s dream is flowing around you and within you
May you have the courage to follow this dream
And may you be filled by and challenged by
The always and forever, God of outrageous love.

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